Welcome to this website about Victor Sloan



Victor Sloan's work will be shown during the Belfast International Arts Festival.

Belfast Exposed presents Beyond, a new survey exhibition of work from world renowned Irish visual artist Victor Sloan.

Containing both some of Sloan’s iconic works and a series of never before exhibited images. Beyond gives audiences a chance to view a broad survey of work from one of Ireland’s major artists, spanning Sloan’s entire career. The exhibition features both Sloan’s trademark hand-manipulated conceptual images and a range of his documentary photography.

The work has a strong international theme, with images from Poland, Germany, The Golan Heights, Syria and Jordan displayed, alongside pieces from Northern Ireland.

Opening Reception: Thursday 12 October 2023, 6pm – 8pm.

Beyond will run from Thursday 12th October until Thursday 21st December 2023. 

Victor Sloan will be in conversation during a special artist talk on Thursday 26 October 2023.

Victor Sloan: Beyond, Belfast Exposed Gallery


About the Artist

Victor Sloan is one of Ireland’s major visual artists. He was born in Dungannon, County Tyrone in Northern Ireland. He studied at Belfast and Leeds Colleges of Art. He has developed an international reputation for creating powerful images, which display his prodigious versatility and inventiveness. He is known for his works commenting on various political, social and cultural aspects of Northern Ireland. As well as working with the medium of photography, he also uses video, etching and screen-printing.

Sloan has been an exhibiting artist since 1980, and his work has been displayed widely throughout Europe, North America, South America and Asia. His work is to be found in numerous important private and public collections worldwide.

Belfast Exposed Photography

23 Donegall Street

Belfast BT1 2FF

Tel: +44 (0)28 9023 0965

Email: info@belfastexposed.org

Gallery opening hours: 11am to 5pm, Tuesday to Saturday



27 May - 30 October 2022

Ulster Museum, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Belfast Photo Festival and Ulster Museum are delighted to present Against The Image: Photography. Media. Manipulation, featuring the work of Victor Sloan, Tabitha Soren, Alexandra Rose Howland and Now You See Me Moria.

The exhibition looks to examine the authority of the photograph in our era of mass media and mass (mis)information. How we consume news and media imagery has evolved, with access to the world seemingly at our fingertips: is what we see the reality?

Artists are exposing this tension, between the truth of events and how they are presented. Responding to various global events and conflicts, the artists included here challenge and expose photography’s highly subjective and mediated nature. They do this by subverting the medium itself — working onto the surface of, distorting or otherwise manipulating images — to expose narratives that often go unseen or some ways resist representation. In doing so they encourage us to question what photographic practice is in the modern age and reflect on how we absorb media in our daily lives.

This exhibition is co-curated by Clare Gormley, Head of Programmes and Partnerships at Belfast Photo Festival, and Anna Liesching, Curator of Art at Ulster Museum (National Museums NI). 


Saturday, June 11, 2022

1:00 - 2:00 PM

Ulster Museum 

Botanic Gardens, Belfast BT9 5AB

Regarded as one of Ireland's greatest contemporary photographers, Sloan’s distinctive work is created by painting, marking and scoring directly onto photographic negatives. Join us for this artist talk and tour, as part of the exhibition Against The Image at Ulster Museum.

This exhibition is supported by:


Victor Sloan’s work is shown in Dublin.

Images Are All We Have

The Paintwork’s, Dublin Castle, Ireland

7th July - 28th August 2022 

Under the title “Opening The Gates”, the 13th edition of PhotoIreland Festival presents the most comprehensive overview on the History and Practice of Photography in Ireland to date, running 7th July to 28th August 2022 in various locations, with the main venue at “The Printworks”, Dublin Castle. 

The main exhibition “Images Are All We Have” traces the thematic development of the discipline and contextualises the historical background, bringing together the diverse and socially engaged set of contemporary art practices that define Irish Photography today. 

This survey exhibition on the discipline involves artists spanning several generations, practices, and backgrounds.

Contact PhotoIreland:

+353 876856169
T: @PhotoIreland
F: /PhotoIreland.org
I: @PhotoIreland


Victor Sloan's work is exhibited in Belfast.

‘Portrait of Northern Ireland: neither an elegy nor a manifesto”

Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast

12 October to 4 November 2021.

“Holding the Rope”, from ‘Drumming’ series, silver gelatin print, toner and gouache, by Victor Sloan. Collection: National Museums Northern Ireland.

“Holding the Rope”, from ‘Drumming’ series, silver gelatin print, toner and gouache, by Victor Sloan. Collection: National Museums Northern Ireland.

This exhibition demonstrates the quality and integrity of fine art practice in Northern Ireland over the past 100 years. It does not aim to be definitive but is rather a survey of the breadth and depth of artists’ responses to the geographical, social and political landscape.
Taking its subtitle from curator John Hewitt’s poem neither an elegy nor a manifesto, this exhibition is neither a lament for nor a celebration of Northern Ireland. Instead, it shows how the artists who were born or have worked in this part of the world have responded to the particular and universal experience of the people who live here.
Whilst the evolution and persistence of artistic themes is not linear, the works in the exhibition give a sense of the development of fine art practice since the 1920s.
This major exhibition features over 100 artists who have changed the way we see ourselves and the landscape around us. From Paul Henry and William Scott to Turner Prize nominees, the exhibition also showcases the work of recent graduates from Belfast School of Art.
Curated by Shan McAnena, the Portrait of Northern Ireland Exhibition is a collaboration between the Northern Ireland Office, the Government Art Collection, Arts Council NI, leading galleries and collectors as part of the wider cultural programme of the Northern Ireland Centenary.
The exhibition is open at the Golden Thread Gallery, Belfast from 12 October to 4 November 2021.
Also part of Belfast International Festival.
Please visit the website ourstoryinthemaking.com to find out more about Northern Ireland Office Centenary events and programmes.


Victor Sloan's work is shown in ‘Island Life’ in Bristol, England.


18 May – 31 October 2021

Bristol Museum & Art Gallery | Queens Rd, Bristol BS8 1RL

Bristol Photo Festival 2021

'Ferryquay Gate, Derry', silver gelatin print, toners
and watercolours,1989. 

Island Life draws upon photographs from the Martin Parr Foundation

collection to show the changing fabric of our cities, society and

collective identities. Focusing on post-war from the UK and Ireland,

the exhibition will bring together images by over 60 photographers

Collectively the images form a compelling study of national behaviour.

The exhibition includes photographs which document moments of

historical significance including the poll tax riot, the Aberfan mine

disaster and most recently, the BLM movement. These will be

displayed alongside images depicting the everyday – weddings,

shopping, football and Butlin’s holidays. Island Life traces the

evolution of documentary photography in Britain, the photographers

who influenced Parr and the younger generation he is influencing in



Akihiko Okamura, Anna Fox, Brian Griffin, Cas Oorthuys,

Chloe Dewe Mathews, Chris Howgate, Chris Killip, Chris Shaw,

Clémentine Schneidermann and Charlotte James, Clive Landen,

Colin Jones, Colin Moody, Dafydd Jones, Dan Wood, Daniel Meadows,

David Hoffman, David Hurn, David Wise, Don McCullin,

Dougie Wallace, Eamonn Doyle, Elaine Constantine, Gilles Peress,

Graham Smith, Homer Sykes, Humphrey Spender, Ian Macdonald,

Ian Weldon, Jill Quigley, Jo Spence and Terry Dennett, John Davies,

John Hinde, Jon Tonks, Karen Knorr, Ken Grant, Khali Ackford,

Lorenzo Vitturi, Marcelo Brodsky, Mark Neville, Markéta Luskačová,

Paul Graham, Paul Reas, Paul Seawright, Paul Trevor, Peter Mitchell,

Pogus Caesar, Raymond Depardon, Raymond Moore,Richard Billingham,

Robin Friend, Roger Mayne, Ron McCormick, Sergio Larrain,

Shirley Baker, Siân Davey, Simon Roberts, Sue Packer, Sunil Gupta,

Tom Wood, Tony Ray-Jones, Victor Sloan, Vinca Petersen.



Victor Sloan's work is shown in Berlin, Germany.

Of people and walls – 30 years after the fall of the Berlin Wall

Schloss Biesdorf, Berlin

October 28, 2019 to February 14, 2020
Opening on October 27, 2019, 06:00-10:00 p.m.

30 years ago, in November 1989, after 28 years of existence, the Berlin Wall, symbol of German division, was accidentally opened by strong public pressure from many people in the eastern part of the country. The trigger was a misleadingly formulated note, read out at a press conference by Günter Schabowski: "To the best of my knowledge ... that is immediately, immediately".
On the occasion of this worldwide symbolic event, Schloss Biesdorf is opening the exhibition Von Menschen und Mauern (People and Walls) on October 27, 2019.
In addition to various artistic works on the Berlin Wall, its opening and its slow disappearance, the exhibition shows positions on political walls in a global context. Today, walls still demarcate and exclude people all over the world, locking them in, constricting and separating people from each other. The perspectives of the participating artists reveal dividing lines and boundaries between the included and the excluded, illuminating the relationship between man and political power. Works of fine art from various genres are shown: painting, graphics, sculpture, photography, performance, multimedia and video.

Participating artists:
Marina Abramovic/Ulay, Kurt Buchwald, Christo (reproduction with the kind support of Matthias Koddenberg), Sighard Gille, Sabina Grzimek, Franz John, Martin Kippenberger (reproduction with the kind support of Galerie Gisela Capitain), Mark Lammert, Wolf Leo/Manfred Butzmann, Ute Mahler and Werner Mahler, Rudi Meisel, Manfred Paul, Stefan Roloff, Jürgen Schneider, Erasmus Schröter, Victor Sloan, Peter Thieme, Wolf Vostell and Dieter Wendland and others

Curated by Gabriele Muschter and Uwe Warnke in collaboration with Karin Scheel
Lenders: the artists, DPA

A catalogue will be published to accompany the exhibition.

Dialogical guided tours through the exhibition with Fenia Franz (Labor M), the dates will follow soon.
Accompanying programme: Labor M – art education at Schloss Biesdorf

An event of the department of culture Marzahn-Hellersdorf.
More information about culture in Marzahn-Hellersdorf can be found on the Internet at www.kultur-marzahn-hellersdorf.de.


Victor Sloan's work is included in Troubles Art

Troubles Art 
Nerve Visual Gallery, Derry, Northern Ireland  

19 January - 28 April 2019

Holding the Rope, Lurgan County Armagh, silver gelatin print, toner and gouache, 58 cms x 58 cms, from the 'Drumming' series,1986 

Drawn from the art collection at National Museums NI, the Troubles Art exhibition provides a broad representation of responses to the Troubles by a range of artists from Northern Ireland and beyond. The subjects, themes and meanings of the works are diverse and offer the perspectives of the artists themselves.

Some works are direct responses to violence inflicted on innocent victims. Some are shaped by the social and political outlook of the artists. Others capture visual aspects of conflict and division. Together they evoke a variety of experiences and emotions and reflect on the causes, impact and complexity of the Troubles.
The exhibition explores a range of themes which are universal to conflict – such as suffering and loss, violence and destruction, imprisonment, sectarianism, traditions, territory, and life in the midst of turmoil. The unique perspectives of artists themselves offer opportunities to consider the Troubles and their effects in ways other than through history and politics.
The exhibition forms a part of Making the Future, a major new cultural heritage project from Nerve Centre, National Museums NI, Public Record Office of Northern Ireland and Linen Hall Library. Making the Future is a €1.8m project supported by the European Union’s PEACE IV programme that will explore the legacy of the past and create a vision for future change.
Troubles Art deals with themes of violence and division and their impact on individuals and society. If you have been affected by any of the content in this exhibition please contact WAVE Trauma Centre, 028 7126 6655.

Nerve Centre
5-6 Magazine Street, Derry~Londonderry  BT48 6HJ
Tel: +(44) 028 71 260 562  |  Fax: +(44) 028 71 371 738  |  email: info@nervecentre.org web: https://nervecentre.org


Victor Sloan's works are included in Crossing Lines.

Crossing Lines, Highlanes Gallery, Drogheda 
and the F.E. McWilliam Gallery, Banbridge 

23 November 2018 - 26 January 2019

Sham Fight (with Sword), Scarva, silver gelatin print, toners, dyes, inks, bleach and gouache, 43cms x 56cms, 1992

This joint exhibition runs concurrently in both galleries from 23 November 2018 to 26 January 2019. It explores ideas of dissent, dissonance, and difference in art and society; embracing change, inspiring hope, and the important role that art and artists have in challenging traditional thinking, provoking reflection, insight and fostering new ideas that often defy the norm.
Among the artists exhibiting are Duncan Campbell, Joy Gerrard, Stuart Brisley, FE McWilliam, Victor Sloan, Susan Philipsz and Maud Sulter; with artwork selected from Arts Council Collection, Southbank Centre, London, the Arts Council of Northern Ireland Gifted Collection (2012), National Museums, NI and artist's studios.
Exhibiting Artists: John Behan, Paul Bowan & Andre Stitt, Ian Breakwell, Stuart Brisley, Duncan Campbell, Tarik Chawdry, Jack Crabtree, Jack Cudworth, Anthony Davies, Rita Duffy, Joyce Edwards, Joy Gerrard, Sunil Gupta, Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Sonya Hanney & Adam Dade, Siobhan Hapaska, John Benton-Harris, Mike Hogg, Bob Jardine, Gavin Jantjes, Tam Joseph, Peter Kennard, John Kindness, Permindar Kaur, Terry Loane, Olga Magliocco, Alice Maher, Colin Middleton, Fionn McCann, Declan McGonagle, F.E. McWilliam, Brian O’Doherty, Jack Packenham, Tony Phillips, Susan Philipsz, Bridget Riley, Nigel Rolfe, Dermot Seymour, Victor Sloan, Bob and Roberta Smith, Maud Sulter, Joanne Tatham & Tom O’Sullivan, Mitra Tabrizan, Annie Wright.

Highlanes Gallery, Laurence Street, Drogheda, Co. Louth, Ireland
W. www.highlanes.ie E. info@highlanes.ie T. + 353 041 9803311
Highlanes Gallery is open 6 days a week, Monday – Saturday, 10.30am-5.00pm, closed Sunday

FE McWilliam Gallery & Studio, 200 Newry Road, Banbridge, Co. Down, BT32 3NB
W. www.femcwilliam.com E. info@femcwilliam.com T. + 0044 (0)28 40623322
FE McWilliam Gallery & Studio is open 6 days a week, Monday – Saturday, 10.00am-5.00pm, closed Sunday



Belfast Exposed are proud to be producing 50 signed limited edition reproductions of the original Belfast Zoo III by Victor Sloan, one of Ireland’s major visual artists.

These unique high-quality reproductions are printed on ‘Hahnemuhle FineArt Baryta Satin 300gsm’ archival paper. The dimensions of the prints are 17” x 17”, which includes a 3.5” white border. The prints are £125 and come with a certificate of authentication.
To purchase one of these exclusive artworks, please contact Conor by email at c.obrien@belfastexposed.org or by phone at 
+44 (0)28 9023 0965. 

As part of Late Night Art, on Thursday 6th December 7pm-9pm, Victor will be available in Belfast Exposed Gallery for a special signing event. Due to Victor’s popularity, it is anticipated these amazing prints will be in high demand.

Belfast Exposed Photography
23 Donegall Street
Belfast BT1 2FF

Tel: +44 (0)28 9023 0965

Victor Sloan started his art practice as an abstract painter. He had always used the camera but it was not until 1981 that he began to use the medium systematically. However, he had no intention of producing ‘pure’ photographs for exhibition purposes.

“I want a photograph to say more than a photograph usually says. It’s not just a photograph in a magazine. It’s a statement… something personal. I want to make people to look at the image in a different way; see behind the image. People tend to dismiss photographs as just being photographs.” (1)

In 1983 Victor Sloan paid a visit to Belfast Zoo with his children. He brought a camera to take some family snaps, but he ended up taking a different, more troubled and troubling kind of photograph. He found himself standing looking in sadness and dismay at the chimpanzees trapped behind a pane of scratched, scarred, battered perspex, its cloudy surface smeared with ice cream and marked by graffiti. As he observes now: "Someone said that you can tell a lot about a society by the state of its zoo."

There and then he decided to take photographs of the animals. But rather than trying to isolate them from their context, he deliberately viewed them entirely in terms of their context. The chimpanzees are virtually silhouettes, distanced, tenuous presences behind grubby perspex. The glare of the flash bounces uncomfortably back at us and the images have a worn, battered look about them.

The chimpanzees in their cage are on show. The contemporary debate on the ethics of zoos relates to the contested point where elucidation shades over into entertainment, and to the specious presumption of superiority, all issues pertinent, as it happens, to human societies. It also touches on the conditions of captivity. The thing about animals confined to zoos is that their lives have, particularly in the past, been reduced to impoverished, repetitive parodies of their existence in the wild. Sloan photographed various kinds of animals in the zoo, but felt himself drawn back to the images of chimps because, as he says, we relate to monkeys, we see ourselves in them. The caged animal, its life recast and displayed as a theatrical, reductive parody of itself, is a metaphor for the individual immersed in the codified, ritualised world of a social and cultural framework. (2)

While it is true that the artist disclaims any social or political intention at this juncture – it was to be a while before he consciously began to interrogate his images – nevertheless, a number of these images function metaphorically as statements about Northern Ireland. For example Belfast Zoo I, reveals the legend ‘I.R.A.’ scraped into the perspex, encouraging a reading which would suggest that the Northern Irish are trapped by the I.R.A., like the monkeys in the cage. They can stare outwards but are incapable of effecting change: they are prisoners in their own society. (1)

1: Extract from Marking the North - the Work of Victor Sloan, by Brian McAvera, published by Open Air, Dublin and Impressions, York, England

2: Extract from A Broken Surface: Victor Sloan's Photographic Work by Aidan Dunne in Victor Sloan: Selected Works 1980-2000, published by Ormeau Baths Gallery and Orchard Gallery, January, 2001.


Some of Victor Sloan's works: 
Click on image